No longer content with merely blocking Google's buses, some anarchists in San Francisco declared war "on every vehicle connected to the gentrifying tech companies" following an alleged tire-slashing attack on a Google Shopping Express delivery van.
A claim of responsibility was posted to IndyBay:
this saturday the 14th, a few people slashed the tires of a google shopping express delivery van when it was stopped in traffic in the Mission District. the driver was so out of it they didn't even notice and drove off slowly with the rest of the vehicles. its not clear where the truck finally broke down or how much the delivery schedule was affected but another truck would be needed to complete the route. we now declare open season on every vehicle connected to the gentrifying tech companies. go forth, comrades! to a world without commodities, money, or exploitation...
The Saturday afternoon attack allegedly took place at 16th and Mission, where a group of housing activists were hosting a festival against a proposed luxury condo development at the busy intersection.
Another IndyBay commenter "Sam" claims the vehicle, driven by an "older Latino man," made it three blocks with two slashed tires. He went on to frame the incident as being an "attack on the working class."
Talked with another driver down the block, but also on Dolores, a couple hours later. This guy was of African descent and was a little freaked out that people were talking to him. We asked whether he worked for Google or a contractor. Nervously, he said his direct employer was a one-day delivery service called 1-800Courier. This is an Atlanta-based logistics company, much like UPS or FedEx.
These guys were obviously overworked, underpaid — and fearful — members of the working class. Not unlike the kids of color who deliver pizza in my own residential San Francisco neighborhood. If someone orders are large pepperoni with their app, are you going to slash their tires too? Are the tires of Uber, Lyft and Sidecar vehicles targets too? If not, why not?
This new approach to fighting tech-fueled gentrification sounds strikingly similar to 1998's Mission Yuppie Eradication Project, which aimed to end all gentrification in the Mission District by slashing tires and vandalizing all "yuppie vehicles."
It didn't work.
We have reached out to Google for a comment and will update this post if we receive a response.